Dear Little Stars Families,

It is truly a delight for me to visit in the Little Stars Room and see your children busy at play and happily settled into their daily routines. They are really gelling as a cohesive little group, and they so enjoy being together during free play, gym and outdoor times, project, snack, lunch, and circle times. This month Yoga has also been added to the mix, with the Little Stars participating in a 45-minutes class with Jovan (our Yoga teacher extraordinaire) every Thursday morning. Jovan has a very creative and energetic approach to Yoga, and the children have pretended to play in the ocean and swim, climbed walls with their feet, and even tried the tree pose.

Through the past few weeks the Little Stars teachers have focused on Autumn, Food, and Family – all curriculum areas that the children can experience first-hand and actively learn about. One recent day they read “Apples Here” by Will Hubbell, a beautifully-illustrated book that describes the seasonal changes of an apple orchard. Afterwards, the children looked at 3 different-colored apples – red, green, and yellow – then took turns tasting a slice of each type. The teachers then worked with the children to make a chart of their favorite apples by putting each child’s name on a sticky label and having the children pick which apple was their favorite by placing their name on a picture of a red, green, or yellow apple. The result was a chart that organized the children’s information in a clear and readable manner. (Please take a look at it in the book corner.) Another food the children enjoyed recently was pumpkin bread, which they made – and ate – themselves. Some other food activities have included reading the fun counting book “10 Red Apples” by Pat Hutchins, and making a group food collage by placing cut-outs of different foods onto a long piece of clear contact paper. This collage is displayed above the sand table.

Along with Food, the Little Stars have also been focusing on Families as a curriculum topic. After reading some of the children’s “All About Me” books together, the teachers asked all the children “Who is in your family?” and wrote down their replies on a big chart paper. Please take a look – it is hanging by the block area. They also drew pictures of their families using crayons on construction paper. The children showed quite a bit of focus as they worked on these drawings, staying much longer than usual on them. (They are also hanging above the block area.) The Little Stars have also read “Who’s in a Family?” by Robert Skutch (with pictures by Laura Nienhaus), a wonderfully inclusive non-fiction book about the many different family configurations we have, and “Who’s in My Family?” by Robie H. Harris (with pictures by Nadine Bernard Westcott), another inclusive book that looks at many kinds of families. The Little Stars have also been learning a new song: “I Love My Family” sung to the tune of “You are My Sunshine.”

All this focus on food and families led beautifully to our International Food Day celebration this past Friday. Your family posters are wonderful – thank you for putting so much thought and effort into them. The children are continuing to enjoy looking at them and learning more about their friends. And the lunch itself was amazing – it was a beautiful sight to see the Little Stars gathered together at a long banquet table, enjoying one another’s dishes (thank you for preparing) and listening to stories about them. Please be sure to take a look at the photos from that special event, displayed to the left of the family posters.

Some important dates:

Thursday and Friday, November 27 & 28 – Collective closed for Thanksgiving holiday

Wednesday, December 3, 6:30-8:30pm – Kindergarten Fair

Saturday, December 6, 10am-1pm – Open House

Enjoy the short week – and the upcoming Thanksgiving holiday,